STRIKING a balance between implementing new ideas and keeping faith with previous methods which have proved successful will be key during the run-in, according to Gary Waddock.
Oxford United’s new head coach admitted “there are not enough hours in the day” as he got up to speed at the club ahead of tomorrow’s trip to Dagenham & Redbridge.
Assuming the reins with just eight games remaining, which has since dwindled to seven after Monday’s 3-0 defeat at Southend United, presents a challenge.
Waddock has a philosophy about how he wants his side to play, but is aware of the dangers of flooding sessions with too much information.
“I can’t all of a sudden within a day or two say ‘here you go, this is what we’re going to do’ and the players take it all on board,” he said.
“We didn’t change anything drastically going into the Southend game and nothing will change drastically going into Saturday’s game, because we’ve not had the time to implement a lot.
“I don’t want the players to be confused, I don’t want a cross-over of what’s been in place and what I’d like to bring in.” Those factors, plus United’s position in the Sky Bet League Two play-off places, mean some elements will be held back until pre-season.
Waddock said: “You have to, because in all fairness you’ve got to give the players and staff credit for where we are in the table.”
One of the new boss’s first tasks was to pick through the DVD from Roots Hall.
While it did not make happy viewing, there was a benefit for someone taking a crash course in United’s players.
“You probably learn more about the group from a result like that than going into it and winning it comfortably,” Waddock said.
“A draw or a win covers it up, but if you look at it, it was a very young back four on the right side and Hunty (David Hunt), who is a right back, was playing as a left back.
He added: “We’re obviously disappointed with the result, but we have to have a reaction from that.”